By Matt Atkinson, Chief Membership Officer 

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This week’s #LocalHeroes

I think it’s safe to say that a lot of us in England will have welcomed the easing of lockdown restrictions in most of our towns and cities this week. But as many of us book that long-awaited haircut or make plans to go for a socially distanced meal with friends, it’s important that we remember to be kind and forgive ourselves for having a down day. Things are still far from normal.

As always, our Local Heroes continue to do incredible work in their communities up and down the country, and the difference you continue to make isn’t going unnoticed.

Sarah and Nick from our Birtley Depot have been supporting Feeding Families with essential food items for vulnerable families. Colin and Gill from our Funeralcare team in South Shields planned a triple funeral for one family with military precision, amazing standards of service and care at what was, undoubtedly, one of the most difficult times in their lives.

Lockdown didn’t stop us from moving forward in equality and keeping the spirit of annual Pride events alive for our customers and members this year. A big thanks goes to Beth and the team at Long Eaton for their incredible window display, along with the colleagues in our Food stores who supported celebrations.

Steph from Funeralcare contacted a local hedgehog rescue to encourage them to sign up for the next round of our Local Community Fund, and she was so impressed that she now volunteers with them! You can read more Local Hero stories like these – and see some very sweet pictures of Steph’s new hedgehog friends – online.

I love hearing about the amazing work you do, so please continue to share your stories on Yammer and social media using #LocalHeroes. Don’t forget to  sign up to the Co-op Social hub here It’s quick to do and means you’ll be able to share our content with your friends, family and followers on social channels (and earn points and prizes too!).